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DZS has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Optician, an optical networking solution provider based in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, and its portfolio of optical transport solutions. The Optician solutions have completed the Telcordia OSMINE certification process required for deployment by Tier 1 service providers in North America and will form a new DZS “O-series” product line that will enhance the DZS Mobile Transport portfolio with environmentally hardened optical transport products optimized for mobile backhaul. Optician’s optical transport solutions will complement DZS’s market-leading 4G / 5G xHaul Mobile Transport portfolio that are currently deployed in five Tier 1 mobile networks. The new line-up of optical transport products will also add metro and regional aggregation and transport options for Broadband Access solutions. In addition to intellectual property and products, the transaction will bolster DZS R&D, operations, sales and corporate functions.

Telecom Review North America recently visited with Charlie Vogt, CEO of DZS, in order to give our readers a good overview of the DZS growth trajectory.

“After joining DZS in August of 2020, we established a playbook that began with the best talent, and quickly transitioned to technology, innovation and marquee customers around the world,” said Charlie Vogt, CEO of DZS. “The acquisition of Optician will uniquely distinguish us from the traditional Edge Access Mobile and Broadband suppliers and accelerate our path forward with Tier 1 service providers in North America. I am pleased at the prospect of welcoming the Optician employees to DZS, a team that will bring unique North America development and integration experience in the areas of ultra-high speed coherent optics and environmentally hardened transport solutions.”

The acquired assets will enhance the DZS xHaul and broadband access solutions portfolios with optical systems that complement the extensive DZS portfolio of packet-based products. The result will be a comprehensive solutions portfolio with both optical and packet-based networking options that can deliver world-class performance, flexibility, scalability and ultra-low latency to the fast-growing 5G and 10gig-class optical broadband markets worldwide. In addition, the O-series products will bring advanced thermal design and carrier grade reliability, making them the first 100G and above transport solutions to deliver flexibility for network edge, remote and industrial deployment scenarios.

Optician has historically provided dynamic, carrier-grade optical networking solutions to many of the largest service providers in North America, and DZS will bring a wider array of resources, solutions and services to these customers.

"Optician is thrilled by the prospect of becoming part of a global leader like DZS, and feel that our innovative products and employees will be a great complement to their winning culture and world-class solutions,” said David Weymouth, CEO of Optician. ” Our customers will clearly benefit from the inclusion of our products in a much broader solutions portfolio that includes complementary Mobile Transport and Broadband Access technologies, as well as Customer Premises equipment. We believe that the vision and direction that Charlie and team have established for DZS is poised to make waves in the industry, and it will be exciting to now be a catalyst to that growth and transformation.”

As a strategic technology supplier to many of the world’s most advanced 5G and Broadband networks, DZS is well-versed in the challenges of getting cutting-edge mobile technologies to market at scale. Success requires agility, including the ability to leverage assets already deployed in the field. As a leading provider of both traditional access, fiber and advanced mobile solutions, DZS is uniquely bridging the wireless and wireline worlds. Optician products, with their exceptionally high performance and environmentally hardened form factors, will enable the DZS mobile transport portfolio to address a variety of new deployment scenarios and leap to the front of a specialized and growing segment of the market.

“Transport infrastructure must evolve to support the demanding capacity, performance, and reach requirements of 5G mobile networks,” said Julie Kunstler, Senior Principal Analyst at Omdia. “CSPs are concerned about cost and scaling for 5G transport, especially those pursuing aggressive deployment strategies and Open RAN architectures, according to Omdia research. Vendors are developing new optical transport solutions that meet the performance, cost, and scaling requirements of 5G transport, taking advantage of access, edge, and optics expertise.”

Mobile Growth

DZS has now surpassed 1.5 million mobile transport ports shipped. Relied on by many of the world’s most innovative and advanced mobile service providers, DZS intelligent Fronthaul, Backhaul and Midhaul (“xHaul”) solutions are delivering high performance, deployment flexibility, ultra-low latency, and high-resolution synchronization capabilities required for the shift to 5G and beyond.

“DZS has established itself as a pioneer in intelligent mobile xHaul solutions working in partnership with many of the world’s most admired leaders and disruptors,” said Charlie Vogt, President and CEO of DZS. “DZS has worked closely with these network operators to efficiently optimize their cutting-edge mobile transport requirements while refining and enhancing the DZS PON portfolio as new capacity and deployment requirements emerge. Complementing our commitment to further innovate and expand our edge access mobile transport portfolio, we recently announced plans to acquire coherent optics innovator Optician – creating a differentiated set of open network solutions designed to provide a compelling bridge between fiber access and next generation wireless networks.”

According to Omdia’s 2021 “Trends to Watch: Mobile Infrastructure” report, global 5G investments are increasing – despite COVID-19 – especially through Open RAN and virtual RAN architectures. In Japan, DZS intelligent front- and backhaul solutions have helped Rakuten turn the promise of Open RAN into a reality and build a new 5G-centric mobile network deployed to millions of users. In South Korea, DZS is powering the LG U+ and KT (formerly Korea Telecom) state-of-the-art commercial 5G networks – delivering speeds that are up to 20 times faster than 4G LTE.

“DZS is now deploying its third generation of intelligent and open mobile optimized xHaul gateways, offering a combination of class leading capacity, unique software-driven features and packaging options with necessary synchronization capabilities to empower forward-looking operators” said Andrew Bender, CTO of DZS. “Innovation in advanced mobile networks is accelerating, and DZS is partnering with leading carriers in real-world, software-defined 5G and Open RAN deployments.”

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